July 2014

From Fitzrovia to Highgate via Hampstead

Frights and Delights

Hello everyone,

Just to inform you that the 2nd Part of Dark Morte’s film on myself and the paranormal investigations of the British Psychic and Occult Society is now up on her YouTube channel. This episode is titled – perhaps appropriately – “Wicca, Paganism & Psychic Investigations” and carries on from Part 1 which concluded with a BPOS investigation in the Snowdonian Valley in 1985.  Amongst other things, I discuss the advancement of 20th century Wicca which, I point out, might well be much older (by thousands of years) than Gerald Gardner’s 1930s epoque as asserted by ‘New Age’ protagonists. Gardner’s book “Witchcraft Today” written in 1954 really gave way to this assertion of the ‘modernists’, but then, this only really amounts to a ‘book-shelf’ mentality which has somehow been turned into an unfounded myth by those in fact having no true knowledge or experience of the customs and traditions of true Wicca.

In anycase, you can watch part two of Darke Morte’s film here:

What other news?  Well last week my good friend Redmond McWilliams, and Secretary of the BPOS Patsy Langley, organised a walking tour of haunted Hampstead and Highgate, in conjunction with Redmond’s Facebook group ‘The Highgate Cemetery Vampire Appreciation Society’.  They had a big turnout, and the attendees for this seven mile long trek included Paul Adams (author of Written in Blood) and David Saunderson of The Spooky Isles.     Their walk took in the Bull & Bush pub, Jack Straw’s Castle, the Spaniards Inn, and of course Highgate Cemetery West, and was loosely based on this self-guided walk.  

Unluckily for them the Highgate ‘vampire’ did not come out to play.  Yes – like the ungracious and temperamental lower-astral realm cad that he is allegedly is, he didn’t even creep up on David Saunderson whilst this photograph was being taken, despite repeated calls from his fellow paranormal tourists of “He’s behind you!”

 

 

Holly bush

 

Still, a good time was had by all.   It was unsufferably hot in my Highgate flat on the day on account of the heatwave, and so sadly the anticipated after-party could not be accommodated this time around.  However, Paul, Della, David and myself have some other projects in the pipeline which will see the light of day very soon.   In the meantime, in case anyone missed it, here is my recent podcast for The Spooky Isles with Paul and David.  Enjoy everyone!

For now,

David

 

The Spooky Isles Podcast Ep. 5 – David Farrant with David Saunderson and Paul Adams

 

David and Paul laughing

Happy Birthday to You!

Well, I can honestly say that laziness is not the reason for my recent lack of Blog posts! (I really have got a true excuse this time!) Anyway, to bring you all up to date, there is a bit more news which I am sure some of you will already be aware of.

Dark Morte released the first part of her new video last week, which involves a questions and answers interview with myself by Dark Morte and ritual magician Jon Kaneko-James about the paranormal and, of course, the infamous Highgate ‘vampire’. Actually, to be accurate, that part of the interview (the Highgate ‘vampire’, has not been released yet, but I believe it will be in part 3 of 4. I will be putting all four parts of her video onto my Youtube channel as a playlist, so look out for that, but here is part 1 to be getting on with:

By the way I should point out that the interview in its entirety forms part 6 of Dark Morte’s’s Frights and Delights series of documentaries and interviews. Dark Morte also writes a Blog for the Spooky Isles, and you can check out more of her professional work here:

+ Official website – http://darkmorte.com
+ Facebook fan page – https://www.facebook.com/the.dark.pri
+ Twitter – https://twitter.com/Dark_Morte

I caught up with Dark Morte and her partner Merlyn (who is responsible for the marvellous Frights and Delights camera work) again on Saturday at the launch of my good friend and fellow author Paul Adams’s new book ‘Written in Blood – A Cultural History of the British Vampire.’ Dark Morte and her cosplaying friend and colleague The Daywalker Rebooted were in attendance as Selene from Underworld and legendary vampire-slayer Blade, in Dark Morte’s words to ‘safely keep any problematic Lycans and Vampires away ;-)’. Well that made us feel in safe hands! It was lucky for Gareth J. Medway however that they didn’t notice him in the crowd, else he would have been quickly staked, no doubt!

Emma Darke Morte as Selene Paul Adams and The Daywalker Rebooted (c) Dave Milner / BPOS 2014
Dark Morte as Selene, Paul Adams, and Rune / The Daywalker Rebooted (c) Dave Milner / BPOS 2014

 

The launch went very well, and had a great attendance with representation from The Ghost Club, The Society for Psychical Research, The Highgate Cemetery Vampire Appreciation, The British Psychic and Occult Society, The Spooky Isles, and London Haunts and Horrors, as well as many fans of the gothic and vampire genres. BPOS cameraman Dave Milner attended and filmed the event for those who could not make it, and you can watch the video below.

I was very proud to be asked to deliver the keynote opening speech at the launch, and extremely pleased that the first book containing original and accurate observations about the Highgate case to be published for quite some time received such an enthusiastic reception. Well done Paul! And Happy First Birthday to your book! I am sure it will still be going strong when it enjoys its 70th!

Emma Dark Morte, Merlyn Roberts, Paul Adams and David Farrant at the launch of 'Written in Blood' July 2014 (c) Dave Milner / BPOS
Dark Morte, Merlyn Roberts, Paul Adams and David Farrant at the launch of ‘Written in Blood’ July 2014 (c) Dave Milner / BPOS

What else? Well before the launch, Paul and David Saunderson of The Spooky Isles conducted a podcast interview with myself, which is now online. It was fun to discuss subjects other than the Highgate ‘vampire’, such as the past, present and future of psychical research, and some other cases which the BPOS have investigated over the years. You can listen to the podcast at this link.

David Farrant, David Saunderson and Paul Adams recording a podcast for The Spooky Isles July 12th 2014 (c) Dave Milner / BPOS
David Farrant, David Saunderson and Paul Adams recording a podcast for The Spooky Isles July 12th 2014 (c) Dave Milner / BPOS

We had a small ‘gathering’ at my home in Muswell Hill after the event, to wind down and discuss the launch (and have some coffee, pizza and wine in no particular order!), which was a good opportunity to reflect upon a very successful and positivity filled day. Just one question remains – who was the solitary and silent man of mystery with the crash helmet, seemingly afflicted with shyness, sketching away very professionally like a court-room artist? Apparently, although I did not see them myself, he caught some very good likenesses of the young ladies present, but didn’t sketch any men. If you are reading this then please do get in touch, I don’t bite! And perhaps your sketches could be featured on my Blog!

Well that’s it for now everyone, I think I might give myself a week off. That said, I’m sure there is something ‘important’ about tomorrow, or something I need to do … maybe it will come back to me in my well-earned sleep.

David Farrant

President, British Psychic and Occult Society, etc., etc.